On Thursday, 14 April 2016, UJ’s Prof Rory Ryan, Executive Director: Academic Development & Support, welcomed the University’s outstanding undergraduate students into the UJenius Club for 2016. The UJenius Club is the University’s initiative to acknowledge exceptional academic performance. The event was held at Sanlam Auditorium on the Auckland Park, Kingsway (APK) campus.
UJenius Club offers UJ’s best performing undergraduate students study benefits and additional opportunities of intellectual and professional development. Students who’ve achieved an end-of-year average of 75% in the previous year, on a full course load, and with no module below 70%, are nominated for membership into the UJenius Club.
“The University of Johannesburg’s (UJ’s) vision is to become a center of academic excellence, and has embarked on activities aimed at increasing its global ranking. As a result, retaining students through to post-graduate level and other factors related to postgraduate research output are becoming progressively important focus areas, amongst others,” says Ms Kerri Ann Alexander, Counselling Psychologist: The Centre for Psychological Support and Career Development.
“It is important, therefore, to place attention on the success and retention of undergraduate students, in order for successful postgraduate study to ensue.
“Research has shown that increasing students’ social capital through their involvement in clubs and societies has a positive influence on student engagement and retention through to the completion of undergraduate degrees, as well as increasing students’ academic performance overall. The UJenius Club members are therefore a prime cohort for potential post-graduate students,” added Ms Alexander.
“The focus of the initiative is to acknowledge and promote academic excellence as a core component of the UJ student identity; bring together students from a diverse range of disciplines to stimulate interdisciplinary discussion and collaboration; promote UJ values; create a social space where UJenius Club members from different Faculties and campuses are able to interact with each other; to build partnerships and friendships; create opportunities for closer contact with members of the broader UJ community; and provide UJenius members with privileged connections and benefits, given their academic performance.”
Ms. Alexander concluded by noting that high-performing students are invited to become members of the UJenius Club and offered additional opportunities for intellectual and professional development; including certificates acknowledging their academic achievements, and additional benefits as club members.